Tomato Couscous with Chickpeas; old books

A few months ago, just before lock-down, I was planning a dinner party for a few friends. It was going to be Moroccan food, with a lamb tagine, couscous, chickpeas, etc.

Lock-down happened before the dinner party and I was left with all the ingredients but only the 2 of us to eat it. The lamb went in the freezer and the rest joined the other staples in my pantry.

Then the weather started to get nice, the grills came out of storage and we no longer were doing winter cooking.

Summer cooking should be easy and one can’t get much easier than couscous…. At least the way I make it. I have watch a proper Moroccan chef make couscous and there is nothing quick or easy about the way she did it.

Here are the Lamb Steaks we had with it – yes, I do make my own recipes….

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Tomato Couscous with Chickpeas

This is almost a salad. We had it slightly warm with dinner, but there was a bit leftover which was great cold the next day.

  • Author: Katie
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Total Time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: 2 servings 1x
  • Category: Sides


  • 1/2 cup (3oz, 90gr) couscous
  • 3/4 cup (6oz, 180ml) tomato juice
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 tsp cumin
  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 tbs Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbs garlic chives, chopped
  • 1 tbs regular chives, chopped
  • 1 tbs marjoram, chopped
  • 1 tbs purple basil, chopped
  • 10 cherry tomatoes, halve or quartered
  • 1 1/2 cups (14oz, 400gr) chickpeas 


  • Heat tomato juice to boiling in medium saucepan. 
  • Add paprika, cumin, and olive oil.
  • When juice is hot remove from heat and add couscous. 
  • Stir once or twice, cover and let stand for 10 minutes. Do not stir again. 
  • When time is up add herbs, vinegar, and chickpeas to couscous, fluff gently with a fork to combine.
  • Add tomatoes and stir to combine. Serve.


This is the easy way to make couscous. Any liquid heated to boiling will work. If you wanted a hot side, you could heat the chickpeas before adding to the couscous.

Keywords: couscous, chickpeas

Tomato Couscous with Chickpeas

I read a lot.

Because I read a lot I re-read a lot. I couldn’t afford to keep me in new books.

Besides, I like old books / books I’ve read before. They can be like old friends.

However, because I also buy books I really can’t keep all of them. I started re-reading some of my older novels to see if they were worth keeping – to be re-read again in 10 or 20 years.

The book I’m reading now is ‘Deceptions’, by Judith Michael. I have all of their books, and, I (obviously) liked them. The main characters are strong, working women in their 30’s. When I first read the books I could relate – being a strong, working woman in my 30’s.

The books were current at the time, late 1980’s and 90’s, when women were finally starting to seriously break into the corporate world.

I’m reading them now in 2020…. some of the scenes make me cringe. A man makes a decision for them and, even though they resent it, they accept it, then spend hours working up the courage to confront him.

It occurred to me that I’m too close to the time frame to enjoy the books. Maybe in 100 years they will be read as a reflection of the times, like ‘Wuthering Heights’ or ‘Pride and Prejudice’…. Read with a slight smile and shake of the head at the old-fashioned ideas.

Now I’m just finding them a bit annoying.

I don’t think they’ll make the cut

5 thoughts on “Tomato Couscous with Chickpeas; old books”

  1. I have a few books that I’ve given away that were pretty dated, but overall, the books I’ve kept over the years, and there are a LOT of books, I read with an eye to the time they were written. I don’t have a lot of ‘modern’ stories though. Most of mine are historical or paranormal and while some of them still reflect the times to a certain extent, I can read and enjoy them for what they are. I’ve tried reading some of those ‘modern’ stories and they’re just not for me.

    I thought for a minute that your dish had grapes in it but I realized that must be green tomatoes. I think I could like this though I’ve never made couscous, but your way seems very easy and quick.

    • Ha! They do look like grapes? But I don’t like grapes in salads lol. Have you read The World Walker series? I think that would be classified as Fantasy….. But I loved it.
      I have a lot of historical, also… they’re never dated.

  2. I’ve just been reading a book about Hedy Lamar. Now there was a genius of a woman seen about 99% for her body. Sorry to say I am just leaning to give her some big credit for the technology in my cell phone.
    At the same time, I maybe see some reason/basis for how my mom & dad’s marriage evolved.

    • Hedy Lamar…. one of those women one does not equate with technology. I’m going to have to find out more. We can still be so quick to make assumptions

  3. Yes the Moroccan method of making couscous is a far cry from the instant type I knew in Australia !

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